Casey Stoner takes time out from competition
Sightings of Casey Stoner look set to become more scarce next year after the former MotoGP champion admitted he needed a year off from motorsport.
Stoner surprised many when he ended his seven-year stint dominating on two wheels and switched to V8 Supercars second-tier category in 2013.
Now he has turned heads again ahead of this weekend's Townsville round by claiming the seven-race Dunlop Series program was cutting too much into his family time.
''Unfortunately this year it's been basically as busy as any other year,'' the 27-year-old told the speedcafe website.
''The idea of it (Dunlop Series) was just perfect to me but it's been a lot busier than what I wanted it to be.
''I really just need a year off.
''I've been doing this since I was four years old. I've been travelling around non-stop and really do just need that time off to get everything done that we've always wanted to do.''
Stoner has had an incident-packed introduction to the second-tier V8 category and currently sits 23rd in the standings ahead of the third round in Townsville.
But whether Stoner is sighted on four wheels next year remains to be seen.
''At this stage nothing is set yet (about 2014). We don't really know what we want to do,'' he said.
''But next year will definitely be a lot more about me and my family rather than tripping around and travelling everywhere.
''I'd definitely like to slow down and get to grips with life a little bit.''
Not that Stoner was lacking motivation ahead of the Townsville street circuit round.
''I actually enjoy the street circuits more than others. It's something you normally can't do on a bike - I am looking forward to getting out there,'' he said.
''I am not looking that far ahead with results to be honest.
''I just enjoy driving it.
''This is something I have never had the opportunity to experience before.
''When you get to picturesque places like this and get to race around the streets, you are pretty lucky.''
Practice for the Dunlop Series will be held on Friday before three races are held over the weekend.